Questions for ‘NASA is readying to send humans back to the moon’

illustration of an astronaut on the moon

With NASA's recent Artemis I launch, the countdown begins for getting humans back on the moon for the first time in 50 years (illustrated).


To accompany ‘NASA is readying to send humans back to the moon


Before Reading:

  1. NASA is preparing to send astronauts back to the moon for the first time in 50 years. Brainstorm a few reasons why the space agency might be interested in sending people to the lunar surface. What could people learn about the moon by going there that they couldn’t by looking at the moon from Earth? What could people do on the moon that spacecraft can’t?

During Reading:

  1. Who were the last people to visit the moon?
  2. What did the Artemis I mission test?
  3.  What does Teasel Muir-Harmony say motivated the Apollo program? (Hint: It was not science.)
  4. What was significant about the orange-ish soil Harrison Schmitt brought back from the moon?
  5. What is NASA’s Moon to Mars program?
  6. When is Artemis II scheduled to launch and what will that mission do? What about Artemis III?
  7. How often does NASA hope to run Artemis missions following Artemis III? What will be the goal of those missions?
  8. List two major accomplishments of China’s Chang’e program.
  9. Why does James Head call the International Space Station the “United Nations in orbit”?
  10. What could astronauts learn by exploring craters at the lunar south pole?
  11. What important resource might be found and mined at the moon’s south pole?

After Reading:

  1. It is estimated that by 2025, NASA will have spent $93 billion on its Artemis program. Does that amount of money seem worth going back to the moon? Why or why not? Consider what could be gained by sending astronauts back to the moon and whether that investment seems worthwhile. If you don’t think so, how else might that money have been used here on Earth?